The last couple of studio cuts from Greg Hoy to be released as singles have felt like stepping stones luring us away from the synthetic sounds of contemporary rock towards something a bit more retro. There’s been a hint of psychedelia here, a bit of garage rock there, but all of it stylized as to benefit the searing, guitar-centric style of Hoy’s anthemic play. His latest single/video combo, titled “Here Comes the Light,” is a bit different from its 2020 counterparts on the strength of its grungy harmonies and fearlessly pop-inspired hook, but it’s certain to satisfy this artist’s longtime fans and newcomers much the same.
Where “Here Comes the Light” as a song is quite rebellious against overly old school aesthetics, the music video reinforces a cerebral theme within the material that some might link to a vintage rock look – and rightly so. Hoy obviously has an affinity for the vinyl-born sounds of a warmer, more insular era in the rock n’ roll genre, but I don’t think this is diminishing his originality in any fashion; quite frankly, I think it’s magnifying it. It’s only through the rich tonality of the instruments here that we’re able to really appreciate the other, subtler details in the music (which is as contemporary now as it was a half-century ago).
Watch the official video for “Here Comes The Light” below
The strut of the guitar parts we encounter in “Here Comes the Light” could be described as a bit of a new signature for Greg Hoy, whose music has evolved to incorporate a lot of diversity in the past fifteen years but nonetheless bears a certain likeness from one release to the next. There’s something special about having a trademark in an era that has rejected symbolic gestures of consistency among too many subgenres in western pop, and from the looks of his latest single, this player is more than aware of this.
I couldn’t help but get lost in the magnetizing confidence of these grooves, which balance the occasional hesitance in Hoy’s vocal here rather brilliantly. In a song like this one, highlighting the underlying duality driving the music forward is as essential to winning the audience’s heart as inventing a catchy rhyme to match the climax in the chorus would be, and in creating a juxtaposition of hesitation and adrenaline-seeking excitement, we get everything he can offer us from within the otherwise limiting walls of a recording studio.
A dirty, hard-charging treat for alternative rock fans everywhere this season, Greg Hoy’s “Here Comes the Light” affirms everything I already thought about who he is as an artist. There are a lot of players in rock trying their best to keep the spirit of the genre’s glory days burning as hot as ever, but what I like about Hoy is that he never tries to relive the past – he just cultivates the best aspects of its original sound to meet the needs of his unique audience. You’ve got to give him credit for finding the perfect formula, and it’s very much in play here.